I have been in a long distance relationship with my boyfriend for more years than I can count! I won't sugar-coat it for you - it's not easy, and there may be times where you just want to call it quits. I wouldn't advise you to get yourself into this situation unless there's absolutely no viable alternative; and you shouldn't even consider it if your relationship is still quite young! Distance will break apart relationships that weren't meant to last, but will have the opposite effect on partners that should definitely be together (ever heard the phrase, "Absence makes the heart grow fonder?")
If you do decide to take the plunge, here are my tips for enduring the distance:
- Talk to each other every day. It might be hard, but you should touch base with each other at least once a day, even if it's only for a few minutes. If you really, really don't have time, or if the time difference is too awkward, at least send each other an e-mail every day. It can be just a quick one: the point of this is to make sure you are in each other's thoughts, even when you're not physically together. Skype is an amazing way to stay in touch - I don't know what I'd do without it!
- Go on a date, once a week. Yes, I know you can't both get into the same car and drive to a movie, but you can still do things together! Here is a great list of things you can do together from a distance. Even if your date means chatting to each other online, the key is that you are spending time together. In some ways, long distance relationships can make you closer, because you are forced to talk to each other much more than you may be used to.
- Try to see each other as often as possible. It might be once a year; it might be once a month: see each other as often as time/budget permits.
- Trust your partner. Jealousy may arise during long separations, but trust is essential to maintaining your relationship. If you develop feelings for someone else, don't hide them. Discuss it with your partner. Sometimes it may just be a case of displacing emotions for your loved one onto someone who is nearby, and your partner may be feeling the same way. If you can identify this, you can stop yourself from making a mistake.